So hard to believe it’s been five years already since my little ZigZag was born! FIVE. Such a big boy number! My littlest dude is growing up was too fast.
And by fast, I mean EVERYTHING he does, he does fast! And in some cases, it’s SUPER fast!
I just want to say, “Slow down!” but this is how it’s been since he was born…
If you have no interest in birth stories you can stop reading now and not hurt my feelings one bit. If you opt to read further you do so at your own risk. Consider yourself warned.
*flashback 5 years and 15.5 hours ago*
It’s morning, roughly 8am. I’m all snuggled up in bed but my bladder is awake and not letting me doze happily back off to sleep so I roll over in order to get out of bed and make my way to the bathroom when suddenly something gushes out of me. So I rush to the bathroom all the while thinking to myself, “I have better bladder control than that!” I start knocking on the wall separating the bathroom from the bedroom I shared with my then husband in an effort to wake him up. Panic set in and simple knocking turned to pounding soon accompanied by yelling, trying desperately to wake him up and quite frankly more than a little afraid to stand up. By this point I was fairly certain my water had broken.
Finally I woke him up. It took forever (really only about 10 minutes but when you’re in labor every single minute can feel like 10 minutes!). He got himself and E-man dressed and grabbed a few minor things as we headed out the door. We took the loop around town to get to the hospital as it was the fastest speed limit and the least about of traffic. The whole way there he kept saying things like, “I can’t believe you’re in labor” and “Are you sure you didn’t just lose bladder control?”.
Somewhere in the middle of the drive I get on the phone with my mom (a travelling NICU nurse at the time), trying not to panic even more but still almost screaming, “I think my water broke and we’re going to the hospital!” My mom had just headed back to Reno (or maybe Los Angeles area – I can’t recall) after spending her birthday week celebrating at home and had very little if any sleep, just calmly said, “Get to the hospital and have them check you then call me and let me know for sure”.
*Flashback 12 hours prior to the evening before*
Location – the local bowling alley
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, at 8 months pregnant – roughly 4 weeks from my due date – I am in a bowling alley with a group of wonderful people from our church. In all fairness, I only threw the ball 4, maybe 5, times. One of the couple had their 4 year old daughter with them so I let her do most of my turns. It was a great (apparently labor inducing) night!
*Fast forward to our arrival at the hospital*
After what is still probably the longest drive I’ve ever taken (only 20-30 minutes but like previously stated everything is longer when you’re in labor), we arrive at the hospital, park the car, and rush in through the Emergency Room doors. The girl behind the counter stays in her seat and looks up from her cell phone long enough to say, “That way” as she points us down the hall towards the elevators. I wasn’t nice enough to tell her I was probably leaking amniotic fluid all over her floor and could use a wheelchair.
We make it up to the 2nd floor and begin the Labor & Delivery triage. Somewhere in the middle of this chaos it comes out that we were headed to the hospital that day anyway to register and get all of the paperwork done that is necessary for delivering a baby. Apparently the birth of a baby DOES come with a book, just that book is nowhere near related to an instruction manual for how to raise said baby. In the midst of getting vitals (blood pressure, heart rate, temperature, and the addition of fetal monitors to monitor baby’s heartbeat) one of the nurses commented that I had probably just lost some bladder control since I wasn’t having contractions and I was still so far from my due date. Rather than voice my opinion (which we found out shortly after was fact), I just glared at her thinking, “I don’t normally run around with wet pants and fluids gushing out of me!” but again, I was nice.
After getting my vitals and getting me settled into a triage bed one of the nurses came in, ran some swabs in the fluid, and confirmed that yes, it was amniotic fluid and yes, I was in labor. Soon after I was wheeled into a much bigger, private, delivery room. I also learned that once the water breaks or amniotic fluid has leaked or gushed out the baby has to be delivered within 24 hours. There are exceptions to this as with everything but I won’t be detailing those here.
*Fast forward a couple of hours*
Near lunch time, about 11 or 1130am, I start getting hungry but because I’m in labor the nurses won’t let me eat. I’m also not having contractions and this is roughly 3 hours into labor. No contractions. The nurses called my doctor (he’d been briefed when we came in on what was going on) and he okay’d some induction meds, namely pitocin, in order to get the contractions going. And boy did that get the contractions going! I soon requested an epidural and consequently discovered that epidural’s don’t work on back labor which is where most of my contractions were.
By this point the word had gotten out that baby boy #2 was on his way and visitors started stopping by. Some brought gifts, one good friend brought toys for E-man to play with since he was somewhat stuck in the delivery room with us – at least until the actual pushing started. And my mom had been updated and was working with her company to get home as fast as possible.
Many hours, MANY HOURS, went by and I’m still in labor, still have contractions, and the nurses are still coming in about every hour or so to check how far I have dilated. My doctor had also poked his head in at least once to say hello and to check things out himself.
I have to interject a note here that when a woman is in labor ALL sense of modesty goes completely, 100% out the window.
At one point, a nurse told me that the baby hadn’t turned into the proper position for birthing, he was still breach, and that I should lay on my side in order to help him turn. I did what she suggested, anything really to avoid a C-section. What I didn’t know then but quickly learned, is that epidural’s are somewhat dependent on gravity. So, as I laid on my side my epidural was going all to the side I was laying on which meant that, by the time I rolled back onto my back, one side was completely numb as it should be and the other had near normal feeling in it
I know we had lots of visitors and frankly I don’t remember who visited before ZigZag came and who visited after. I do know that my brother picked my mom up from the hospital just before 11pm and brought her straight to the hospital. We’re all just hanging out and talking. Or rather, my mom, brother, husband, and my good friend are hanging out talking and I’m trying to be nice and listen to them having fun. I remember at one point grinding my teeth because the pain was hurting so very bad.
I don’t recall the time but I do remember asking people to leave, everyone except my mom and my husband. And of course doctors and other random hospital staff.
Finally, it was time to push. And push. And push. And seven minutes later they (nurses I’m assuming) were putting a warm blanket on my tummy and handing my baby over.
Now, in a “perfect” setting I would have cuddled him up and started nursing and being all mother-y to him. In reality, the blanket was so warm and I was so very tired from the pain of the contractions to the pushing and everything else that when they put the blanket on my tummy I literally tried to push it away. I only vaguely remember this (may have bit a smidge delirious) but I remember pushing the blanket away, not realizing it was for the baby just thinking that I was entirely too hot for a blanket, and a nurse saying something akin to, “but don’t you want your baby?”. I did hold him then, kind of like a little child holds a kitten.
Once the cord was cut, he was whisked away to a little baby bed brought into the room specifically for him. And then the nurses just walked away from him.
I thank God nearly every day that my mom was there and I truly believe that ZigZag waited on his grandma to arrive before he was born. Once the nurses walked away my mom walked over to ZigZag and started working on him. I was completely out of it at this point but I have been told that he wasn’t breathing or wasn’t breathing well and that he failed his APGAR’s. I don’t have the official APGAR score from the hospital so I have no idea what the nurses working that day have as his rating. I do know that my mom was the first person to do anything with him besides lay him in a bed and that she is the reason he started breathing right and did not go to the NICU.
So from my water breaking at roughly 8am to the time he was delivered, just after 1130pm, 15.5 hours passed. Somewhere around midnight or so I finally cuddled up to my baby and just breathed him in.
And now, well technically yesterday, he turned five. He spent his fifth birthday home sick, playing with lego’s, watching movies, and cuddling. We did have a party for him the day before but that will be another post.
Happy birthday ZigZag! Every day with you is an adventure – starting all the way back at day one!
*the following pictures courtesy of my brother*